How Women Can Promote Heart Health

4 steps to have your heart beat long and healthy

You’ve probably heard quite a bit about women’s heart health in the news, but you’ve never really understood why so much focus has been placed on the heart. It’s overflowed with happiness and joy and probably been broken a few times, but no matter what rough patches you’ve put your heart through, it’s your constant and best companion. And if you want to live long enough to see the joys and heartbreak of the future, you’ll need to keep your heart beating strong. By taking just a few simple actions, you can keep your heart beating healthily for years to come.

Step 1: Eat a healthy diet

According to the Healthy Heart Guide, staying away from foods like trans fats and refined sugars is important to women’s heart health. But you’ve known that cookies and fried foods aren’t good for you for quite some time. The challenge will come in cutting out those foods and replacing them with heart-healthy substitutes like fish, which contain Omega-3s, and cholesterol-reducing garlic and olive oil. But you can do it with the many heart-health recipes available in new books and websites that understand your desire to eat healthy food that tastes great.

Step 2: Stop smoking

According to the Women’s Heart Foundation, smoking is one of the primary causes of women’s heart disease. Smoking can be a habit that you use to lose weight or manage stress, but choosing healthy alternatives— like exercise and meditation — can improve your heart health and your lifespan.

Step 3: Exercise

The Women’s Heart Foundation recommends that you do at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. This doesn’t have to be overly strenuous exercise — even a fast-paced walk will do. If you're also overweight, you should try to vamp it up to 60 to 90 minutes each day to take off a few pounds. This way, you not only keep your heart beating, but you'll also look and feel better, leading you to a healthier, more confident lifestyle.

Step 4: Relax

You’re a busy woman who feels like she has to prove that she can do it all. But living a stressful life can take a toll on your heart. And if you’re not alive and healthy, you can’t continue to take care of others. Take the time to care of yourself. Get a good night’s sleep, and manage your stress through activities like meditation and controlled breathing. According to The Women’s Heart Foundation, you should also take at least an hour a day to do the relaxing activities that you enjoy.

Tips and warnings

Although some of these steps are minor lifestyle changes, it helps to get support. Join a gym that offers heart-health support groups or classes. Consult your doctor before starting new diet and exercise plans.

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